[1212.0837] Observing complete gravitational wave signals from dynamical capture binaries

Authors: William E. East, Sean T. McWilliams, Janna Levin, Frans Pretorius

Date: 4 Dec 2012

Abstract: We present a model for the inspiral, merger, and ringdown of highly eccentric compact binaries. We map the binary to an effective single black hole system described by a Kerr metric, thereby including certain relativistic effects not incorporated in existing post-Newtonian approximations. The resultant geodesics source quadrupolar radiation and in turn are evolved under its dissipative effects. At the light ring, we attach a merger model that was previously developed for quasicircular mergers but also performs well for eccentric mergers with little modification. We apply our model to assess the detectability of these sources for initial, Enhanced, and Advanced LIGO across the parameter space of nonspinning close capture compact binaries. We conclude that, should these systems exist in nature, the vast majority will be missed by conventional burst searches or by quasicircular waveform templates in the advanced detector era. Other methods, such as eccentric templates or, more practically, a stacked excess power search, must be developed to avoid losing these sources. These systems would also have been missed frequently in the initial LIGO data analysis. Thus, previous null coincidence results with detected GRBs can not exclude the possibility of coincident gravitational wave signals from eccentric binaries.

abs pdf

Dec 13, 2012

1212.0837 (/preprints)
2012-12-13, 08:44 [edit]

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© M. Vallisneri 2012 — last modified on 2010/01/29

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